Baton Rouge protester captured in iconic photo breaks her silence: 'It's time for us to be fearless'

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The Baton Rouge Photograph That Everyone Is Talking About

Ieshia Evans, the woman who was captured in a photo facing down Louisiana state guards during the protests in Baton Rouge this past weekend, has broken her silence on the face-off, saying in a statement Tuesday night: "It's time for us to be fearless and take our power back."

Evans, who traveled to Baton Rouge with the civil-rights organization Young Minds Can, added that she felt police "were pushing us to the side to silence our voices and diminish our presence."

"When the police pushed everyone off the street, I felt like they were pushing us to the side to silence our voices and diminish our presence," Evans said. "They were once again leveraging their strength to leave us powerless. As Africans in America we're tired of protesting that our lives matter, it's time we stop begging for justice and take a stance for our people. It's time for us to be fearless and take our power back."

A release accompanying the statement noted that Young Minds Can, which according to its website aims to "help repair, unify and free African American people (New Africans) through education, ownership, nationhood and self determination," transported nearly 30 people from Atlanta to Baton Rouge, at the invitation of the New Black Panther Party of Self Defense.

Photos from the Baton Rouge protests:

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Baton Rouge shooting protests
Demonstrators raise their hands in the air as law officials march down a street during protests in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S., July 10, 2016. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
Demonstrators protest the shooting death of Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S., July 10, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Bachman
A demonstrator is detained during protests in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S., July 10, 2016. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Law officers stand on a street during protests in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S., July 10, 2016. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
Kerron Stewart, 10, sits with demonstrators on the steps of the Louisiana State Capitol building in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S. July 10, 2016. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
BATON ROUGE, LA -JULY 10: Protesters shout 'Hands up, don't shoot' as law enforcement gather before charging the protesters to make arrests on July 10, 2016 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Alton Sterling was shot by a police officer in front of the Triple S Food Mart in Baton Rouge on July 5th, leading the Department of Justice to open a civil rights investigation. (Photo by Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images)
BATON ROUGE, LA -JULY 10: People drive past the demonstration honking their car horns in support of the protesters on July 10, 2016 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Alton Sterling was shot by a police officer in front of the Triple S Food Mart in Baton Rouge on July 5th, leading the Department of Justice to open a civil rights investigation. (Photo by Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images)
Police and protesters demonstrate in a residential neighborhood in Baton Rouge, La. on Sunday, July 10, 2016. After an organized protest in downtown Baton Rouge protesters wondered into residential neighborhoods and toward a major highway that caused the police to respond by arresting protesters that refused to disperse. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
Police march toward protesters in a residential neighborhood in Baton Rouge, La. on Sunday, July 10, 2016. After an organized protest in downtown Baton Rouge protesters wondered into residential neighborhoods and toward a major highway that caused the police to respond by arresting protesters that refused to disperse. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
A protester yells at police in front of the Baton Rouge Police Department headquarters after police arrived in riot gear to clear protesters from the street in Baton Rouge, La., Saturday, July 9, 2016. Several protesters were arrested. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
Black Lives Matter activist DeRay McKesson talks to the media after his release from the Baton Rouge jail in Baton Rouge, La. on Sunday, July 10, 2016. McKesson, three journalists and more than 120 other people have been taken into custody in Louisiana over the past two days, authorities said Sunday, after protests over the fatal shooting of an African-American man by two white police officers in Baton Rouge. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)
A demonstrator holds his fist in the air outside the Louisiana State Capitol building during a rally in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S. July 10, 2016. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
A demonstrator protests the shooting death of Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S., July 10, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Bachman
A demonstrator raises his hands in front of police in riot gear during protests in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S., July 10, 2016. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
Demonstrators stand outside the Louisiana State Capitol building during a rally in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S. July 10, 2016. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
Demonstrators protest the shooting death of Alton Sterling near the headquarters of the Baton Rouge Police Department in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S. July 9, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Bachman TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
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During the trip, the group visited the Triple S convenience store, where police-shooting victim Alton Sterling was killed, and demanded justice outside of the police station.

"Although she didn't intend to, Queen Ieshia had a 'Rosa Parks moment' caught on camera that has undoubtedly inspired a generation and made us all proud as African people in America," Young Minds Can founder Jay Morrison said of the photo. "We've been powerless for too long under America's watch, it's time we recognize our independent strength and begin to take our power back."

Since the photo, taken by Jonathan Bachman and published by Reuters, went public, it has been praised for its powerful portrayal of strength, courage and poise in the face of authority.

"Resembles famous one of Tiananmen Square protests," one Twitter user commented.

"This is a legendary picture. It will be in history and art books from this time," another Twitter post marveled.

"No words necessary," another admirer offered.

On Monday, Evans acknowledged the impact of the moment and photo, tweeting, "This is the work of God. Im a vessel,Glory to the most high! Im alive and safe. I have not witnessed any casualties."

Read original story Baton Rouge Protester Captured in Iconic Photo Breaks Her Silence: 'It's Time for Us to Be Fearless' At TheWrap

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